I have practiced yoga for many many years and have had my ups and downs with my confidence level. When I was younger, I was more agile, stronger and flexible. What I never really had a problem with was balance. Man, have times changed!
I was never great at tree pose where you balanced one foot against your thigh and raised your arms up high and strong like branches. Some days I would hold the pose for a long period of time without wavering and other times I could barely keep my foot stable for a few minutes.
But now even the simplest poses seem to allude me. I find myself falling over and feeling like a klutz. How is that possible after practicing for forty-eight years?! I feel weak. Not to others but to myself. I am reminded that my body is not what it use to be. I am still a size six and climb forty-seven steps up to my house numerous times on any given day. But balancing from right to left can be ridiculously challenging.
When I find I can’t practice the way I use to it reminds me of how other things in life are not as easy. I don’t mean physically. I mean the day to day living. The balance of life.
There are days when my balance is totally off. When no matter how I remind myself of my good fortune, I have doubts as to whether I will be able to handle all of the unknowns that await me. Sometimes it’s a bit overwhelming. All the self-help books, affirmations, and meditations just don’t seem to alleviate the restlessness I feel. I can tell you I don’t know all the answers and wonder how other people swing the life balance in a positive direction.
One definition of balance is a condition in which different elements are equal or in the same proportions. So my goal then is to try to balance the quiet with the noise. To counterbalance the worry with the same amount of security knowing that everything is going to turn out ok. In fact, even better than ok. Because at the end of every yoga session is Shavasana. It might look like a nap at the end of your yoga practice. But it’s actually a fully conscious pose aimed at being awake, yet completely relaxed. Now that’s my kind of balance.